Chartpak AD-marker

Some facts:
  • Have only one nib.
  • They have two different markers; one with a trinib and one with a so called fine nib (but the fine nib looks very different from other fine nibs)  
  • The barrel have a wonderful quality feel to it, a bit old school
  • 130 colors (for the trinib marker)
  • Made in USA
  • They have been around a long time and seem to have been one of the favorites for designers  
  • They are xylene based 
Ad marker with fine nib and with a trinib. 
Both very different from other nibs. 
I do not own that many of these markers, and I use them very rarely and yet I actually think these markers are very good. But to me, the smell makes it impossible to use them. All markers I tried so far have a smell but this is beyond that, this is a headache smell.  

I have read somewhere someone saying that there are Ad-markers and there are other markers. I think that’s true. This marker work just so different that it’s not fair to compare them to other markers. The same person also said that the Ad marker is a bit difficult to control, it bleeds a lot, but when you learn to use them they are great. But I have not used this marker nearly enough to utter a complete opinion. What I can say is that it has the best nib that ever was created! The trinib, as it is called, are fantastic to use. It is extremely easy to change your hand position and suddenly you will have a small stroke or a large, there is no limitation how big drawings you want to do.  The nib goes very smooth over the paper. Prismacolor uses a similar nib, but it doesn´t work as well.   

Ad marker vs Prismacolor nib
The red nib is from AD-marker and the blue is Prismacolor. 

Since the smell makes me hesitate to use these markers I do not own so many, but I am a happy owner to some warm grey. This is of course an extremely subjective opinion but I think they have one of the most beautiful warm greys. All brands have their own interpretation on what a warm grey should be and it is interesting to compare. They seem to lack on good skin colors and lighter colors (but this is mostly guess work from color charts). I have tried the skin colors but find them to dark and to intense to my likening. They do however have a blender which can make the color lighter.

Some of the warm greys of AD marker

Maxon Twin Marker

Some facts:
  • They have a chisel nib and a fine nib
  • From Japan
…that’s all I know
Maxon Twin Marker
I bought these markers in a little art store in Japan. The store didn’t have that many markers left so I ended up with a lot of dark browns and greys and no skin colors.

Drawing made with 
Maxon Twin Markers 
on Letraset marker paper
The same company also makes another marker “the Comic Twin marker” which I guess has replaced Maxon Twin marker. They are clearly very different markers (you can read about them here:

These are very standard markers. Not overly bad but not particularly good. They don’t respond well to layering or blending. They start to resist next layering after a while, and becoming almost oily (this is more or less noticeably depending on what paper I use).

I haven’t found any information about these markers on the Internet so it would be interesting if someone else hade any experience or/and knowledge about this marker.   

Molotow Basic Sketcher

- the disappointment 

Some facts:
  • Double ended,one chisel nib (2-6 mm) and one fine nib (1 mm)
  • 120 colors including a blender
  • From Germany
  • Available in sets and open stock 
Molotow alcohol-based Basic Sketcher 
Molotow 12 set 
This is a well-known brand, specialized on graffiti artist, therefore I expected more. The marker is ok, but the blending ability could be better and a lot of the colors are difficult to layer. They don´t become much darker which normally markers do. They can also become a bit grainy on some paper. The color can however cover quite large area without being streaky. I would not recommend these markers for portraits, but for more “coloring in” drawings they work very well.

Molotow on Koh-I-Noor paper
When I first bought a set of twelve I wasn’t sure what I thought about it so I bought 24 more. I think that unfortunately this is often true; it is difficult to judge a marker if you only own a few, at least if it isn’t an obviously problems with them.

Some of Molotows color


- The plagiary

Some facts:

  • A Copic plagiary
  • Double ended, one brush nib and a bullet tip (fine tip) at the other.
  • They have also got a Copic ciao plagiary
  • Have a blender
  • They have random number for each colors but no name 
  • Used to go under the name: Fineclour

The bag that I receive with the markers is a Touch plagiary. 

This marker is an obvious plagiarism on Copic, even if they do point out very clear that they are not Copic (at least on eBay where I bought this).  The ink is a bit grainy on most paper and doesn’t blend well. They also lack good skin colors and lighter colors. Some colors are strange looking and make you wonder what went wrong. I got a feeling that the makers of these markers where in a hurry because there are two colors with the same numbers but they are different colors. 

I do like that the cap looks different on each side of the marker so you will know, or more specific, you can feel which side that have a fine nib and which side that have a chisel nib.
A drawing made with Finecolours on Canson Illustration paper